Posts Tagged ‘crunch’

Eureka California and Skinny Girl Diet at Whisperin and Hollerin

Next on and in the middle of their current UK tour are Athens, Georgia’s EUREKA CALIFORNIA’S who are over to promote their recent album Crunch out on www.hhbtm.com. They are set up in these days classic indie boy/girl duo form of Jake Ward on Guitar and vocals and Marie A. Uhler on drums. Jake has his microphone set up so he is sort of side on and no matter how many times I’ve heard the album I still don’t know the song titles but then as they come at such a frenetic pace and provide such an adrenal rush it doesn’t really matter.

By the time Jake has been rushing through the opening number about it being another day to talk about as Marie’s drums lay down enough power and drive to make Rad Stewart’s drummer seem even more inadequate than he already seemed.

Yes the White Stripes might be an obvious comparison but really they seem more driven by earlier bands and singing about a Photograph with the urgency of early Carter USM so I almost didn’t notice that Marie’s bass drum pedal had fallen apart. After a quick repair, however, it was back to business and Jake could get over having to talk to us and instead concentrate on distilling his guitar sound so that I didn’t notice that it was just the two of them and that the Dice man might have something to say about the full-on attack of the drums pummeling at us like an express train and yes, there was a bit of the Steve Shelley’s about Marie’s drumming.

Happy Again was one of the songs I recognised easily and was also one of the stand-out songs with it’s sort of skewed Buzzcocks sound to it. This was followed another spunky little indie dance floor filler before they started to wind things up with a song that I seem to think was about the Skies. They closed their set with the current single I Bet That You Like Julian Cope and it was played like it should be accompanied by a mini riot against anyone saying no to that statement. It was a perfect, fizzing with energy close to a very cool lo-fi indie set.

I’m led to believe they will be back in Europe again next year and will be well worth catching if they get to your neck of the woods.

Then it was soon enough time for SKINNY GIRL DIET who I’m always happy to see and who seemed to have a bunch of new songs since I last saw them. They are as effortlessly cool a trio of teenage riot girls as you could wish to see and as they started singing about Will You Come Down (on was it Dimethyltriptamine?) that opened the set with the girls who only list their names as D, A and U for added mystery and grunge coolness.

The destruction they sing about while thrashing at their very cool-looking guitar and bass and while never forgetting to pout and look in to the distance like we aren’t there adds to a sense of otherness accentuated by the bands mastering of the need for buckets of attitude at all times. As this teenage girl sings about how we should drug her up I can only hope it’s with good drugs and she doesn’t just become another member of the Prozac Nation.

By the time we get to the first song with duel vocals and proper heavy metal screams (it could have been Nadine Hurley or one of the bands other older songs that I recognized from previous gigs) they have again got their hooks in me even as they have become more low slung and at the same time vitriolic. A neat trick to pull off for sure.

They plead with us not to commit suicide and it’s played with such passion how could we give into that impulse. The set finished with the song about a Wasted Smile all about how some loser is giving them the eye and he really shouldn’t bother. Well no they need more than a smile to convince them to give you the time of day, but really we all need to give them the time of day.

They are now playing plenty of gigs and really need to be seen live to get just how great a young band they are. Find out more gig dates hereSkinny Girl diet online.

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Eureka California at Losing Today

Don’t know whether to laugh or laugh even more, do you reckon we could make the destruction of Julian Cope records a national sport. Of course we joke Jules. We say this because there’s a fair amount of pathological venting of anger being administered by hammers and baseball bats upon various Cope platters in the video to Eureka California’s wilfully deranged ‘I bet that you like Julian Cope’ that we are at present putting pen to letter suggesting a Morrissey remix. And no we don’t joke Stephen. Anyhow mini Stonehenge’s aside – nice touch that incidentally – this is probably the most unforgivingly feral, wired and frenzied 1 minute and 7 seconds you’ll encounter this missive and needless to say the rest of the year unless of course the Magik Markers make an unhinged last gasp band call before December run out of days – go on do it, do it, do it. Anyhow this is just pure manic delight built upon a stuttering and butchered Ramones coda that imagines a three way ringside head butt between the Violent Femmes, Teen Anthems and the Pooh Sticks, incidentally on the coolest of labels HHBTM  – so you know it’s a must.

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Eureka California at God is in the TV

American garage-rock duo Eureka California are about to land in this country in support of their second album Crunch. Giving us fair warning of their imminent arrival and the likely destruction they will heap upon us, guitarist Jake Ward and drummer Marie A. Uhler have offered us a sneak preview of the video that accompanies album track ‘I Bet That You Like Julian Cope’

Acting out in front of their hometown of Athens, Ga’s very own Stonehenge monument, they lay waste to one of the former Teardrop Explode frontman’s vinyl records with much enthusiasm and a baseball bat and claw hammer for 68 seconds of marvellous primaeval fury.

Eureka California’s album Crunch was released via the HHBTM Recs label.

Catch Eureka California live and dangerous across England and Wales in November:
6th – Halifax @ Puzzle Hall w/ Hobbes Fanclub
7th – Liverpool @ 81 Renshaw w/ Good Grief, Norweb
8th – Scarborough @ Cellars w/ City Yelps,Tallboy
9th – Bristol @ Cafe Kino w/ Personal Best, Two White Cranes
10th – Cardiff @ Buffalo Bar w/ Nuclear Lullaby
11th – Manchester @ Guilty by Association w/ Amida
12th – Sheffield @ Audacious Artspace w/ Cowtown
13th – London @ Buffalo Bar w/ Skinny Girl Diet, Radstewart
14th – Brighton @ the Hope w/ Skinny Girl Diet, Girlpool, Witching Waves
15th – Nottingham @ the Chameleon w/ Tigercats, Dignan Porch, & Witching Waves

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Eureka California at PerformerMag

Athens’ HHBTM Records has been knocking it out of the park lately. Like labelmates Muuy Biien, Eureka California is loud, buzzy, kinda punky and a little beyond definition. Like their (probable) ’80s garage/college rock idols, EC blends jangly, fuzzed-out guitars with bombastic melodies and a touch of humor. A frenetic energy that causes tracks to spit forth every two minutes with a kinetic palpability keeps both A and B-sides moving at a whiplash pace.

Standouts include the über-catchy “There’s No Looking Back” and “Twin Cities,” which makes sense seeing as how fans of Twin Cities staples like The Replacements, Soul Asylum and Hüsker Dü will likely fall in love with this record upon first listen.

Crunch is a badass record for badass people from a badass label with badass taste in music. Thumbs up.

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Eureka California at POP! Stereo

Sometimes being obnoxious can work to your advantage. It certainly does for Eureka California who’s album Crunch is an energetic explosion of spazztic indie rock riffage and their second album in less than two years. Seemingly unable to stop making music, Eureka California can’t slow down and that inability to control themselves is reflected within the sounds of Crunch. Sounding like a long lost artifact unearthed from 1994, this record is loud, raw, unrefined and about as sloppy as the best Pavement record. 

Crunch is a hyper, jumpy, caffeine fueled journey through eleven songs in twenty five minutes. It’s such a fantastic mess that the whole thing sounds like it was pieced together with chewing gum and duct tape and recorded on a broken boom box found their parents garage. It’s exuberant and simple and almost impossible not to love. Guitars jangle, wrangle, distort and sound like they’re tearing themselves apart while drums bash and bang and the vocals strain, scream, and snap vocal chords. Crunch is one giant wall of indie rock noise that should really suck but miraculously doesn’t. It’s proper indie rawk and it’s relentless in the pursuit of the two minute noisy pop song. 

Crunch on paper isn’t much to write home about, it’s an uncomplicated, noisy and brash mess. But listening to the thing makes it all worthwhile. This is what indie rock is supposed to be like; it’s honest, raw, and pure and contains zero percent posturing. As their bio notes Eureka California are often torn between rocking out and giving up. How can you not love that? That’s the kind of rock and roll I want to listen to…bands with a suicidal lust to just kick butt and rock out or chuck in the towel and go home.

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Eureka California at The Skinny

Jake Ward is a clever so-and-so. Over-educated, over-stimulated and over it all – the classic American slacker tale, and one that can feel overdone when everyone’s searching for missing buttons from plaid shirts. But unlike most of his generation, he’s got tunes to amplify his smarts, and alongside turbo-charged drummer Marie A. Uhler, he’s found the perfect vehicle to express them.

Could be low fidelity that makes super-catchy clatter like No Mas and Twin Cities feel redolent of Guided By Voices – or maybe it’s just that Ward grew up on the same diet of Brit invasion pop, post-punk noise and cheap beer as Pollard and co. Either way, even Eureka’s best impressions sound like their own voice, plus they’ve got the chutzpah to turn writer’s block into engaging subject matter on the wry Art Is Hard. Best of all is the self-deprecating This Ain’t No A-Side, where the world’s catchiest fuzz-riff bounces into your skull to pogo for all eternity. A treat.

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Eureka California at POP! Stereo

Sometimes being obnoxious can work to your advantage. It certainly does for Eureka California who’s album Crunch is an energetic explosion of spazztic indie rock riffage and their second album in less than two years. Seemingly unable to stop making music, Eureka California can’t slow down and that inability to control themselves is reflected within the sounds of Crunch. Sounding like a long lost artifact unearthed from 1994, this record is loud, raw, unrefined and about as sloppy as the best Pavement record. 

Crunch is a hyper, jumpy, caffeine fueled journey through eleven songs in twenty five minutes. It’s such a fantastic mess that the whole thing sounds like it was pieced together with chewing gum and duct tape and recorded on a broken boom box found their parents garage. It’s exuberant and simple and almost impossible not to love. Guitars jangle, wrangle, distort and sound like they’re tearing themselves apart while drums bash and bang and the vocals strain, scream, and snap vocal chords. Crunch is one giant wall of indie rock noise that should really suck but miraculously doesn’t. It’s proper indie rawk and it’s relentless in the pursuit of the two minute noisy pop song. 

Crunch on paper isn’t much to write home about, it’s an uncomplicated, noisy and brash mess. But listening to the thing makes it all worthwhile. This is what indie rock is supposed to be like; it’s honest, raw, and pure and contains zero percent posturing. As their bio notes Eureka California are often torn between rocking out and giving up. How can you not love that? That’s the kind of rock and roll I want to listen to…bands with a suicidal lust to just kick butt and rock out or chuck in the towel and go home.

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Eureka California at Insite Magazine

Review is on page 20.

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Eureka California at Innocent Words

For a duo, Eureka California make a hell of a lot of noise. The Athens indie rockers, comprised of drummer Marie Uhler and singer/guitarist Jake Ward, have just turned in their second full-length in 18 months, and far from sounding like a rushed out also ran, ‘Crunch’ is a remarkably satisfying slice of unpretentious college rock.

Tracks like “I Bet You Like Julian Cope” and “Sneaky Robby” combine the lyrical wit of someone like Jonathan Richman, but the music itself is equal parts Mudhoney and The Jam.
Much like their debut, this one is another whirlwind of short, frantic, but well-crafted power pop ditties that slams to an abrupt halt not long after you drop the needle – their longest song is there-and-a-half minutes long, but most hover around the two minute mark, so the duo are in and out like a band of indie rock ninjas.

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Eureka California at Raised by Gypsies

This is my second time experiencing Eureka California and while the first was on cassette, I must admit that vinyl also does the sound justice.    I’m not going to look at my cassette review of theirs for reference because then I might feel as if I’m referencing the same bands, but here is what I can hear coming out on this album.   If it’s similar to the cassette then that just means they have their style nailed down.   If it seems close enough or a bit off from that review, then so be it.

Right off, I can hear hints of Replacements and Soul Asylum, which do tend to go together.   This is the type of around the same time of grunge but not really grunge type of rock that has many different names (I think someone might call it “college rock” even, but don’t quote me on that) and it’s just somewhere between the movie “Losers Take All” and the great compilation “No Alternative”.

Some hints of something it took me a little while to fully realize comes out and I remember it is Spoon I’m hearing.   Spoon is always in the back of my mind, I just never really think of them right off or perhaps as much as I should.

Also, if only based on the single song “Surrender”, this album in general brings out a lot of Cheap Trick memories for me.     Mixed with all of their other Buffalo Tom-like qualities, this just perhaps demonstrates that not only is Eureka California a good fit for cassettes their music can also transition to record as well.   There are not really a lot of bands, unfortunately, that can be said about these days.

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